(As an aside, I did a little writing exercise in one of my creative writing classes to the tune of Linda Barry’s 9-minute writing exercise video. This was the result. Oh what one can learn about oneself in nine minutes… Anyway, if you’re interested, start out with either a word in mind that means quite a lot to you, or a little bag of words that you will, subsequently, choose one of. Farewell was mine.)
The earth was hard during that dry season. Kayla could think of nothing else as she shoveled the hard gravel in her backyard. Certainly not those little white whiskers and soft fur. No. Around her, the house was quiet and solemn. Any other day, she would be engaged in a game of tag with her two sisters, or taking out the slip’n’slide they played with on the hotter days. The green leaves of the trees surrounding her would sway despite the muggy lack of wind. The trees would seem to revel in the childish foolery, tossing this way and that, as though if they had legs, they might just join in.
But not today.
The quiet seemed almost to echo, and when a car passed down the little gravel road a hundred feet from Kayla, speeding, rocks flying, it startled birds and leaves from the still trees, and the neighbors’ chickens. And little Kayla. The neighbors always drove so fast, not waiting for tiny, little paws of beloved four-legged creatures to scamper from the road, hurrying inside for food and shelter.
They never waited.